*Authors Note* Assassin’s Creed III: The Tyranny of King Washington DLC requires the main game Assassin’s Creed III to play, which is available on PS3, Xbox360, PC and Wii U. Each DLC is sold separately at approximately $11 per slice.
Assassin’s Creed III was without a doubt one of the biggest games of 2012 (AMH’s own Game of the Year), and having sold over 10million copies to date and still flying. It isn’t an Assassin’s Creed title though without some expansive DLC, we’ve seen it in every iteration since Assassin’s Creed II and in each game the quality of the DLC has improved… until now.
The Tyranny of King Washington contains three pieces and tells an alternate history tale where George Washington obtains the Apple of Eden, it corrupts him and he uses his power to oppress the occupants of the United States. Connor awakens completely shocked at the world he has found himself in, knowing that this is not how events transpired (perhaps it was a glitch of the Animus?). A few major changes have occurred, obviously Washington’s new found power, but also the discovery that his mother is still alive and is also trying to thwart Washington’s plans.
All the primary mechanics from the main game of ACIII have returned with the addition of Animal Powers, skills that allow Connor to unleash a pack of wolves on enemies, to develop a wolf cloak, making him invisible to guards, eagle flight that allows Connor to soar from point to point throughout the world at rapid speed, and the bear strike which enables Connor to obliterate surrounding enemies and knock down obstacles to get through. These abilities must then all be combined in a variety of key encounters throughout the 5-6hours combined story. The problem is that with the exception of the pack of wolves the other techniques don’t really serve much purpose outside of their necessary scripted moments. The wolf pack can be handy to clear out enemies without them noticing you and allowing you to maintain a low profile, however the others just provide alternate styles of things you could already do, making themselves essentially useless if you elected not to use them.
It is unfortunate that whilst there was a clear, differing path the game was looking to take, it’s the lack of polish and thought that has gone into the utilization of these new mechanics that makes the DLC feel gimmicky and unnecessary. On the plus side, with our knowledge of the impending Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, it was nice to see some little nods and hints at the new title, as well as giving us all another opportunity to dive into Assassin’s Creed III and explore the world further. If you can focus on the world and not the new things to do in it then you will enjoy this package, if not, then you will find yourself let down.